N. Korean ambassador: From persona non grata to incognito - Nation | The Star Online
X Close


N. Korean ambassador: From persona non grata to incognito

KUALA LUMPUR: Fifteen hours after a diplomatic note was issued declaring North Korean ambassador to Malaysia Kang Chol persona non grata, he has yet to make an appearance.

As of 12.30pm Sunday, there was no major movement at the North Korean embassy in Jalan Batai here to indicate that Kang would be leaving the country as he is supposed to on March 6.

Embassy counsellor Kim Yu-song came out to collect The Star newspaper delivered to his doorstep, but did not speak to the press.

Several people, including one woman, were seen driving in and out of the embassy premises, but none stopped their car to speak to the media.

As diplomatic tensions between Malaysia and North Korea escalated, the number of journalists staking out the embassy has also increased, all keeping an eye on the next course of action by the ambassador and Pyongyang.

On March 4, Wisma Putra issued the diplomatic note declaring Kang persona non grata and giving him until March 6 to leave the country.

This came after the ambassador's continued criticism of Malaysian authorities investigating the murder of Kim Jong-nam.

On March 2, the Malaysian Government announced that North Koreans would no longer enjoy visa-free travel to Malaysia effective from March 6.

Jong-nam, the elder half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, was killed at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (KLIA2) departure hall on Feb 13 with what Malaysian police said was the VX nerve agent.

On March 1, Vietnamese Doan Thi Huong and Indonesian Siti Aisyah were charged with Jong-nam's murder.

Neither recorded a plea and April 13 has been fixed for mention.